Bible Question:

Are all sins the same? Is telling a lie the same as murder according to God?

Bible Answer:

There is no such thing as a “little sin” or a “greater sin.” Before God a sin is a sin. Listen to this passage,

For whoever keeps the whole law and yet stumbles in one point, he has become guilty of all. For He who said, “DO NOT COMMIT ADULTERY,” also said, “DO NOT COMMIT MURDER.” Now if you do not commit adultery, but do commit murder, you have become a transgressor of the law. (NASB) James 2:10-11

In this passage, God says that if we sin by disobeying even one of His commandments, then we are just as guilty as if we had committed murder. That is, we have all sinned (Rom. 3:23, 11:32; Gal. 3:15). Everyone of us! Therefore, since we have been warned to tell the truth and not lie, and since everyone who has lived beyond infancy has told a lie, we are just as guilty before God as if we had committed murder. That is the message of James 2:10-11. Here are two other passages from the Bible that warn us to tell the truth.

You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. (NASB) Ex. 20:16

Do not lie to one another . . . (NASB) Col. 3:9

We are all sinners before God. Everyone has lied. Some have actually committed murder. Yet, it is important to notice that even though lying and murder result in the same spiritual penalty, there are some sins that have greater consequences in this mortal life. God has directed us to take the lives of those who commit murder. We call it capital punishment. Yet, many nations will not do that. Consequently, crime is on a tremendous upswing around the world. Also, note that God only grants divorce when 1) sexual immorality has been committed or 2) the unbelieving partner wants to leave a believer. Yet, men and women are violating His command and statistics reveal that the divorce rate among second marriages is significantly higher than it is among first time marriages. Sexual sins also have significantly higher penalty, according to 1 Cor. 6:18.


Yes, every sin results in the same penalty – spiritual death. But Jesus can and will forgive the one who believes in Him and is willing for Him to take over his or her life. Jesus can rescue you from spiritual death. We would encourage you to read “Peace With God.” The promise of God is eternal life to the one who believes in Him.

Suggested Links:

What does scripture say about the death penalty?
Do we have to keep the commandments and laws given in the Old Testament?